Why Undecided Voters Will Swing to Trump

AP Photo/Jason Allen

I'm always amazed when I look at match-up polls and there's a sliver of respondents who are unsure. It doesn't matter what election it is — Biden vs. Trump, Trump vs. Hillary, Romney vs. Obama, McCain vs. Obama — these undecided voters always get to me. 

What makes their choice so hard? Are they really undecided? It's hard to think of an election where the choices weren't so dramatically different that there could ever be a statistically significant portion of respondents who haven't yet made up their minds, even if they could be persuaded to change their vote.

For example, in the latest Morning Consult poll, 5% of those surveyed in a Biden-Trump matchup poll didn't know or had no opinion.

Really? What's so hard about this choice?

While it's hard to wrap my head around this, the fact remains that these "undecideds" exist. MSNBC conducted a focus group of undecided voters from swing states, and when you watch it, you start to understand the root of their struggle. For one thing, they tend to have negative views of both parties, tend to be critical of Trump's demeanor, and see him as mean and a bully. 

I suppose that's fair. As I've said before, I wasn't exactly a fan of Trump for most of the 2016 campaign. Trump's style hasn't changed since then, either. Is likeability an important issue of a presidential campaign? For sure, it can be a factor. 

But the most telling part of the focus group came when participants were asked about the economy.

"I think [Biden has] been absolutely disastrous for the economy," a participant named Nathan said.

"We have areas here in Pennsylvania where it’s just at a standstill right now, like things are supposed to be being built and the interest rates are just way too high for people to, you know, invest in and start moving, moving around," said a woman named Virginia.

"I mean, I feel like he doesn’t even take accountability for [anything] at all, with what’s going on in the economy, and not even accountability," said Gigi. "Like he’s in denial that it’s happening."

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"The point is, Biden needs to hear the people, because when he’s talking about the economy doing stellar, he’s talking about the stock market," pointed out Omar. "He’s not looking at homelessness or joblessness. He's not... thinking about how much it costs to go to the grocery store. He’s gaslighting literally everyone in the process."

This is pretty damning for Joe Biden. They don't like how he's handled the economy, and they think he's out of touch with the problems they're facing. But perhaps even more dramatic was the moment when participants were told, "Raise your hand if you think President Trump's policies on the economy would be better for your family, personally."

They all raised their hands. Every. Single. Person.

Does anyone think that these voters who overwhelmingly think that Trump's policies will be better for them and their families are going to eventually vote for Biden?  


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